Parasite Prevention and Control
Parasites can be real pests. Both external (fleas, ticks) and internal (Heartworm, Hookworm, Roundworm) parasites can cause problems for your pet and your family.
Prevention is the best approach to eliminating these pests.
Bay St. Animal Hospital carries a wide variety of topical, chewable, and injectable parasite preventatives, including Sentinel Flavor Tabs, Heartgard, Parastar and Parastar Plus, Revolution, Easy Spot, and Program. Please ask a staff member how to best prevent parasite problems in your pet.
What is Heartworm disease?
Heartworm disease, spread by mosquitos, is serious and deadly. Fortunately, preventive medications do exist to prevent Heartworm disease in your beloved companion. The veterinarians at Bay St. Animal Hospital recommend administering preventive medication once per month, all year long.
When should I test my dog or cat for Heartworm?
Symptoms of Heartworm are not always immediately apparent. Therefore, it can be difficult to detect symptoms in your pet. Some dogs may show no signs of the disease, while others may exhibit clinical signs, such as a mild, persistent cough, reluctance to move or exercise (lethargy), fatigue after only moderate exercise, reduced appetite, and/or weight loss.
Cats may exhibit clinical signs that are non-specific, such as vomiting, gagging, difficulty/or rapid breathing, lethargy, and weight loss.
The timing and frequency of Heartworm tests depend on the following factors -
• Pet's age when Heartworm prevention was started.
• Whether preventative Heartworm medication was not taken, as prescribed.
• Whether the pet’s medication was switched from one type of Heartworm prevention to another.
• Whether the pet was not prescribed preventive medication and traveled to an endemic Heartworm area.
• Length of the Heartworm season in the region where the pet lives.
Prevention is the best Heartworm medicine
There is a simple and convenient way to protect your pet from Heartworm disease and illness. Test your dog or cat annually for Heartworm disease.
Lyme Disease is a common problem of both humans and dogs in the forested Northeast. The infection is transmitted by the bite and attachment of a deer tick.
Commonly asked questions regarding Lyme Disease
If I find a tick on my dog do I need to take my dog to the veterinarian?
If you are comfortable removing the tick, you do not need to make an appointment with your veterinarian. The best way to remove a tick is to use tweezers and grab the tick as close to the skin as possible. Pull it straight out. Do not twist or crush. Wash your hands thoroughly following tick removal and disinfect the skin of your pet.
How long does a tick need to be attached to transmit infection?
For Lyme Disease to be contracted, the tick must be attached to your dog for at least 48 hours. It is important, therefore, to inspect your dog's skin daily, especially if they have been in wooded areas.
Does a frost kill all ticks?
No. Adult ticks can be active even if temperatures reach below freezing temperatures. Even in winter months, ticks can be active.